Thursday, January 29, 2009

I'm starving. For some reason I gave my personal chef the month off. Last night I ate ice cream and chips and salsa (in that order) for dinner. (Don't freak out--the fetus got plenty of healthy food all day long, I swear, and anyway, that's what the vitamins are for!!!) Eating has seriously gotten old. No, I take it back, eating is as great as ever, preparing/cooking/even just conjuring up ideas of what to eat, that's what's old. I'm getting tired of eating grilled cheeses and spaghettti and egg sandwiches (that's two separate things: spaghetti AND egg sandwiches, not "spaghetti and egg sandwiches"--I'm not in the craving gross combo stage yet) but I can't come up with anything else to eat. The days of diverse chowing are long gone and no matter how hard I try, I can't remember what was on the plate in those days. All I've wanted all week is pasta. I found this new pasta the last time I was at Whole Foods that is shaped kind of like a snail. I love fun-shaped pastas. This one scored pretty high on the fun scale, but I think I prefer regular old shells (not quite as high on the fun scale due to being commonplace). Shells are good because they hold pasta sauce in their little caverns. These snails were a bit too large to have caverns. I read somewhere that people usually stuff them--but they seem too small for that. So there you have it--too big for caverns, too small for stuffing, and therefore, useless, except to fill the bottomless pit.

"The Book" appropriately enough talks about carbs under the nutrition section for this week. I suppose week 11 is synonomous with pasta for pregnant women everywhere. Or maybe it's a coincidence....In other news (as if there is anything more important than food), the fetus is now the size of a lime. Hmmm...I guess "limes" aren't really other news, huh? We're still talking food here. Though when I think lime, I think Coronoa. Or margerita. Or some other delicious beverage that I won't be squeezing a lime into for a long time to come. Fortunately, aside from the nostalgia, I don't actually miss alcohol. I'm not craving a beer or my most favoritist drink: the dirty gin martini. For a while my stomach was too upset to fathom throwing alcohol on top. Although I'm not feeling sick anymore, I still don't miss it. One exception: sometimes, when Eric has had a few more than 3 he gets all lovey dovey on me, and then I wish I were a bit buzzed too so that I could tolerate his adoration. Sober Terri at 11:00 p.m. on a Friday in the midst of a slightly tipsy hubby is tired and cranky (what I mean is "bit**y) and overall not nice. Me being not nice when he is being super nice always makes me feel super guilty and then the guilt (which I hate feeling) makes me even crankier and meaner. It's a vicious cycle. In the meantime, I've become addicted to carbonated beverages like Kombucha (which is a bit too pricey to drink with any regularity) and sparkling waters (pricier than that stuff from the tap, but much less pricey than a 6 pack of Coronas). Oh, but I only like sparkling waters with lime. I mean, the lemon is better than just plain (plain is unacceptable) but I really only want lime. Maybe I should buy plain and buy a lime and squeeze it in there, just for old times sake. (Diversion: what is the correct punction of "old times sake"? Should time be possessive, i.e. "old time's sake"?)

Alright, I need to feed the fetus. My personal chef (aka hubby) comes home next week--wahooo!!!!! In the meantime, pasta snails anyone??

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Week 10--End of the Embryonic Period

We're in the double digits now baby! According to "the book," my inner growth has grown from the size of a medium green olive to the size of a small plum in the last week, which seems to me like quite a bit of growth for one measley week. We're now in the fruit stages. I'm not looking forward to entering the melon stages...

Week 10 means we're about to be safely out of the embryonic period which, according to "the book" is when most "congential malformations" (whatever those are) occur. Well, to be real, there's of course a chance that we didn't emerge from this stage safely, I mean, it's not like we'd know it yet, right? But at least I know that from here on out, I can be a little less careful, you know, sling back a couple brewskies every now and again, maybe light up a stogie...nothing crazy. (I don't need to write "haha" or "LOL" after that, right???? You guys know I'm only half serious, right??)

Now how 'bout a good ramble?? This topic has confused me since the day I read about it and reared its confusing head again tonight when I picked up a different book. Did you know that there are two ways to determine how pregnant you are? The one the doctors use is fake. Now, I read this a few weeks ago and don't feel like brushing up on it, so work with me while I rely on my very faulty memory to explain. Apparently, since the docs can't pinpoint the exact conception date, they just consider your pregnancy to start when your last period ends (even though you aren't fertile till about 2 weeks later and are therefore probably not pregnant till about 2 weeks later). So, "the book" cites the fake dr. date first (in this case, Week 10) and then below that, in small italic letters, it cites the actual age of the embryo (in this case, Week 8). Tonight I picked up another book I have which goes day-by-day. This book uses the non fake date (maybe the term here is "gestational"??). So the top of the page in this book says Week 8 and then below that, in small italic letters, it says LNMP (last normal menstrual period) Week 10.

From confusion to frustration: Why they gotta have a fake date?? Is it really necessary to measure the age in 2 ways? Maybe we can just measure the age the same way we measure birthdays.

Reading this second book makes me feel like I'm not being as productive as I thought I was, like I'm not as far ahead as I was when I woke up today. I can't get anything done these days!!

So much for the double digits.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

My natural "flora"

This is the other pic I attempted to upload last week...I know, it's equally as vague as the others. It's not my fault that it's only about the size of a green olive right now! I suppose green olives buried in a uterus don't photograph well...So today is week 9, and I received some interesting news from the midwife today. My urine tested positive for Group B Strep. GBS is a bacteria that lives in your privvy parts and your gut (according the midwife, it lives in my rectum, but the websites I'm reading says it can also live in the vagina and intestines). Awesome, huh? I asked her how one contrives such a bacteria and her answer was "It's just part of your natural flora." What a nice way of telling me that my guts are just naturally nasty! Anyway, the websites are equally as vague. They say only that it is not an STD and that 25% of pregnant women carry it and that most don't have any symptoms. Apparently antibiotics don't usually kill it, but are used to treat it anyway so I start penicillin tomorrow. After this bout though, I just deal with it until I go into labor. Prior to my water breaking, I'm going to have to get an antibiotic drip or something. What's the danger? Well, apparently there is a chance that when my water breaks, I can pass the disease on to the baby. GBS can lead to something as severe as meningitis to a mere fever in a newborn. So the pre-labor antibiotics are an attempt to prevent my transmitting this disease to the newborn.

I asked the midwife if there is anything else I can do to get rid of it and her only suggestion was to increase intake of garlic and vitamin c to beef up my immune system. I might look into garlic supplements because I am currently very disgusted by both garlic and onions and have no desire to taste them in anything. I suppose I'll start drinking Emergen-C more avidly as well.


Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Be Still My Beating Heart....Wait, no! Don't be still!

Oh wow was this a difficult process! I've got helpers all over trying to guide me through conversion--mostly my mom and laura who did less guiding and more just doing (much obliged!). This pic here shows the embryo (if you get out your spectacles, you might be able to make out a "E" hovering over the embryo, if not, it's the blobby thing in the center above the large grayish tidal wave that takes up most of the page). The stuff on the right is the heartbeat (I suppose that's another duh, eh?). Apparently those dildo-type things they use to get the sonogram have speakers because we got to hear the heart beat out loud which got Eric really excited but just made me skeptical, I mean really, how do we know that's not MY heart beating??? Answer: this heart was beating 128 beats per minute, which, although not usual for me, is unlikely while calmly resting with my feet in stirrups (maybe not so unlikely actually...).

I have another pic to upload too but don't know how to add it to this same post so, as Arnold says, I'll be back (insert Austrian/Terminator accent)!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009 first post EVER. Feels kinda weird, like I should warm-up with some stretches or something before laying it all out there. At the same time, as the first post, I feel like there's a lot to catch up on so maybe I should just spew it...First, this blog is dedicated to Amy who, due to her location in Africa, is unable to be a regular part of my cranky pregnant life (lucky her). As her first pregnant friend, she has requested that she be kept in the loop and up-to-date via a blog. As a tech-phob, this was a difficult request to process. Let it also be known that I have the first sonogram pics and would like to upload them but have yet to figure it out because this website doesn't accept .tifs. If anyone knows how to convert, please pass it on.

As of tomorrow, I'm 8 weeks pregnant. I'm not sure how much education Amy is looking for, but according to the literature, the embryo is about the size of a pinto bean right now. Yummy! Just kidding. Beans do not sound at all yummy right now, but I am starting to get my appetite back. After 2 weeks of eating oatmeal, toast, bananas, smoothies, and Wolfgang Puck canned vegetable soup (don't ask), I'm actually craving raw veggies again. I had to go to the store this afternoon because everything in the fridge had rotted during my food strike. Hopefully the "food aversion" (which is apparently normal in your first trimester) is over because if there's one thing I hate, it's a picky eater. The other problem with food aversion was that my blood sugar kept dropping and causing me to get super dizzy and nauseas. There was little warning too--I would go from fine to ready to pass out in a matter of minutes. The only solution was to preempt the starvation by eating nonstop (as a result I now have a "food baby"). But when all food is gross, trying to eat nonstop was a real conundrum.

How 'bout another lesson from the literature? Apparently the baby's organs are in place but aren't yet fully formed (the second part of that seems like a big fat "duh" to me), eyelid folds are forming as is the tip of the nose and the ears, and it even has elbows on its stubby little arms!

In other news, I'm fighting the first cold I've had in a long, long time. Apparently developing a baby puts your immune system into relaxation mode (which ensures it doesn't "reject" the fetus as a foreign substance). Normally I start popping my Nelson's homeopathic pillules at the first sign of sickness but I got a little paranoid this time around and refrained from popping anything...I'm guessing the homeopathy would have been fine since all it does is introduce a small amount of the cold into your system to jump start your immune system (and at this point I have a large amount of the cold in my system), but I'm paranoid and taking the safe route.

One last comment and then I think I can wrap this up: I read something that really freaked me out last night. "Studies show that women who consume as little as one to two cups of green tea a day within 3 months of conception and during the first trimester double the risk of a baby with neural-tube defects. The culprit is the antioxidant in green tea--it inhibits the activity of folic acid." Ahhhhh!!!! I'm a pretty avid drink green tea drinker. I mean, I stopped drinking the caffeinated version the second I found out I was pregnant, and about a week later I stopped drinking the decaf because it just isn't the same, but I have been drinking 2 cups a day for years now!! So definitely within 3 months of conception and also for the whole first month of pregnancy (because I didn't know I was pregnant until I was a month in). This is a good reason to use proper protection until you are ready to conceive! An example of a neural tube defect is spina bifida which afflicts nearly 4000 babies born in the US every year. This makes me wonder about the neural tube defect rate in places like Japan where green tea drinking is more common (or is that just a stereotype?). Anyway, my mom assured me that I'd be fine and reminded me that women were giving birth long before there were books (this, ironically from the woman who has so far bought me 6 books and 2 magazines on the topic). So if you're pray-er or a good-wisher or a positive-thinker or just a finger-crosser, maybe you could use your good thoughts and wishful thinking toward hoping I have a healthy, non neural-tube defected baby.